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Note on the Conversations between Adam von Trott zu Solz and "Mr. Eliot" (December 1941)

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Asked whether the object of the movement was a negotiated peace with the Army, Trott was emphatically negative. Peace, he said, and incidentally the success of the movement was only possible after the military power of Germany had been broken. It was hoped, however, that, at an unstated time, it would be possible to stage a coup d'etat and substitute for the present regime a provisional government which could "demand a new deal" from the United Nations for the "decent Germans".

Once established, this government would take certain immediate measures which should serve as acts of good faith vis-a-vis the Allies. These measures would include:

1. The proclamation of the restoration of the Rechtsstaat.

2. The rescinding of anti-Jewish legislation.

3. The return of confiscated property to Jews and Gentiles alike.

4. The evacuation of all occupied territory in Western Europe.

(N.B. No provision was made in these "immediate measures" for the evacuation of Czecho-Slovakia, Poland, Austria, Greece and Yugo-Slavia, and though Mr. Eliot was not entirely clear on the point, it was his impression that Trott was unwilling to surrender any territory which would weaken the position of Germany against Russia.)

5. A statement on the position which the new Germany sees for herself in a federated Europe which she would not seek to dominate.

6. A proposal that, in view of the chaos which would exist in Germany after the collapse of the Nazi regime and the consequent danger of Communism, the German Army in a properly reduced form should be permitted to assist and co-operate with the forces of the United Nations in keeping order within the Reich.

It was finally re-emphasized that there should be no let-up in the Allied attacks on Germany, for under this pressure the movement would grow and gather strength. It was, however, felt that Allied propaganda should give some assurance to the German people that a differentiation would be made between themselves and the Nazi Party, and that Germany would not be partitioned as of her former frontiers. At present they were being convinced by Goebbels that defeat would spell extinction.

Source: Note on the Eliot-Trott Conversations, Geneva, December 1941, U.S. National Archives and Records Administration, College Park, MD, Record Group 226, Entry 210, Box 92, Folder 367.

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